Trade, Investment Summit creates $1.16b investment potential

Published : 01 Nov 2021 11:48 PM | Updated : 02 Nov 2021 01:53 PM

The 7-day Bangladesh Trade and Investment Summit 2021 ends up with 369 B2Bs and $1.16 billion investment potential.

The outcome report of the 7-day “Bangladesh Trade and Investment Summit 2021” jointly organized by the Ministry of Commerce and Dhaka Chamber of Commerce & Industry (DCCI) was  disseminated on Monday at a press briefing held at DCCI Auditorium. 

Secretary, Ministry of Commerce Tapan Kanti Ghosh and DCCI President Rizwan Rahman were present on the occasion.

DCCI President Rizwan Rahman in the outcome dissemination presentation said that during the summit there were 369 B2Bs attended by 552 local and foreign companies from 38 countries where potential investment interest size was USD1.16 billion. 

He said 20 companies from 13 countries showed their interest to do joint ventures. 26 products have been identified as potential for export from Bangladesh. 

“There were few sectors like infrastructure, pharmaceuticals, baby bottle, umbrella, agro and food processing and IT from 5 countries that showed their interest for direct investment in Bangladesh. Power, energy, renewable energy, dairy products, FMCG, RMG, leather, automobile and jute are some of the sectors that have foreign investment opportunities”, Rizwan added. 

He also said that in different sessions under this summit, speakers underscored the need of improving ease of doing business, policy reforms, technology adaptation, skill development, fiscal and non-fiscal incentives, strong economic diplomacy and signing FTA or PTA with potential trading partners. 

Bangladesh has the ability to grab the huge opportunity from African, Asia & Pacific and Middle Eastern countries in terms of inward or outward investments. The most important thing is to enhance our export competitiveness in the global market after the LDC graduation. Bangladesh is already a member of some regional blocks like SAFTA, APTA, D-8. 

However the country needs to go for PTA or FTA with other major trading partners. It came out of the summit that Bangladesh has also a large consumer market, so local market resource mobilization and tariff rationalization are also important, Rizwan Rahman pointed out. Speakers also reiterated a strong and vibrant bond market and innovative blended financing model to ensure long term infrastructure financing.   

Replying to a few questions from the journalists, Commerce Secretary Tapan Kanti Ghosh said that after LDC graduation Bangladesh may need to sign FTA or PTA with potential trading partners like EU countries, UK, Canada, Japan, Australia etc. 

“But averaging duty structure on both sides is a critical thing before signing FTA but the government of Bangladesh is working on this matter. For FTA, a drastic duty cut is not possible as it may hamper internal revenue generation and local manufacturers but it may be considered gradually”, he added. 

Besides, it is the government's duty to safeguard the interests of local industries. Regarding ease of doing business, he said the government is trying to bring all its major services for instance land registration, mutation, company registration in joint stock companies under automation that will ease the process simplification in near future.

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